AI Copyright: Who Owns AI Artworks? | Inquirer Technology

AI Copyright: Who Owns AI Artworks?

08:40 AM November 16, 2022

If you sketch something on paper, does your pencil own your art? It sounds silly, but AI copyright claims have been trying to solve a similar problem.

Nowadays, more people are using artificial intelligence tools that create artwork on their behalf. It will soon become a staple of modern life, so you should prepare and adapt.


This article will discuss the issues surrounding AI copyright infringement. We will elaborate on arguments for and against such claims and cover rulings from various countries.

How does AI art function? 

This is an AI artwork.

Photo Credit:

Before discussing AI copyright, we must clearly understand how AI art generators work. Online services like Stable Diffusion can create works of art alone.


You type a description of your desired art, such as “zoomed-out medieval paintings.” You may fine-tune your entry by adjusting sliders and other settings.

Then, the platform uses samples from millions of online images to create your input. The results may surprise you! 

AI enthusiast Fabian Stelzer raved about how Stable Diffusion adjusted his selfie to look as if it was from the 70s.

Some AI platforms could even create art that mimics the style of acclaimed human artists. Eventually, that became one of the main issues surrounding AI copyright.

Arguments regarding AI copyright

This represents AI copyright.

Photo Credit:

The question is, who owns the artwork, the artist or the tool? You could argue in favor of the artist because the tool used his or her style without permission.

After all, the AI art platform would seem to compete with the artist. On the other hand, you could say the tool owns the artwork.

The artist had no part in creating the AI tool’s work. If the tool owns the artwork, more AI copyright issues arise.


Companies own AI tools and make the rules or algorithms they follow to generate art. Yet, they cannot fully predict how the tool will execute commands. 

That is why AI art platforms let users adjust settings. If the tool fails to meet requirements, people could modify the parameters and run the tool again.

People began paying attention to AI copyright issues due to the increasing popularity of AI art programs. However, various countries have implemented rulings on them before the trend.

The United States Copyright Office declared that “register an original work of authorship, provided that the work was created by a human being.”

Similarly, an Australian court declared that a work generated by a computer does not have copyright protection because a human did not make it.

On the other hand, other countries rule in favor of AI programmers. These include India, Ireland, Hong Kong (SAR), New Zealand, and the United Kingdom.

How to protect your work from AI art 

This represents AI copyright.

Photo Credit:

These arguments stem from our understanding of what copyright is. Copyright laws allow people to protect their ownership of their intellectual property. 

That includes your drawings, videos, and songs. If we did not have them, anyone could claim they own your work and benefit from it. 

Art is a skill that requires dedication and skill. Consequently, many people are willing to pay for it. That is why many of them have turned their craft into a livelihood. 

More importantly, art is an expression of oneself. You could say that art is a deeply personal product that nobody else should claim.

However, that can only happen with proper ownership protections. Based on recent rulings, it would seem that existing laws would need to change to enforce AI copyright. 

The issues we discussed are similar to the ones surrounding NFTs. Some folks were registering works from other artists into their non-fungible tokens.

In response, artists minted their works into NFTs before anyone else. Perhaps we will develop a similar solution for AI copyright disputes. 


AI copyright issues would likely become more widespread as AI art becomes more popular. As a result, resolving them could become a confusing mess. 

Believe it or not, the blockchain may soon solve Ai copyright issues. For example, a decentralized court system called Kleros might work. 

Technology is changing more parts of daily life. You can adapt by following the latest news and updates from Inquirer Tech. 

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TOPICS: AI, Art, Artificial Intelligence, evergreen
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